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Philippians

The Joy Set Before Us

01 - Introduction: The Joy Set Before Us

Acts 16:11-40 • June 11, 2017 • Pastor Ronald H. Gann

In his prison-epistle to the Christians in Philippi (in the province of Macedonia), we learn that Paul’s joy was not dependent upon his circumstances. Although he had been imprisoned for almost four years at the time of his writing (1:18), he rejoiced always and was content in all things (4:11)—even in the face of his uncertain fate (2:17, 18). For that reason alone (and owing to the fact that there are 15 explicit references to either "joy" or "rejoicing") the concept of Christian joy is the central theme of PHILIPPIANS. How about you? Do you find joy in all things? Rich in Christology and personal application, Pastor Ronald H. Gann expounds upon Paul’s famous Prison-Epistle verse-by-verse.

02 - The Joy Of Brotherhood

Philippians 1:1-8 • June 18, 2017 • Pastor Ronald H. Gann

As Paul languished under house arrest in Rome, his joy overflowed. The believers in Philippi, to whom he was writing, were a brotherhood to him. In his letter, therefore, he didn’t concern himself with his own circumstances inasmuch as he was thinking of their faithfulness. He wasn’t focused on his own afflictions inasmuch as he focused on their love for him and each other. And he wasn’t so much concerned about his own suffering inasmuch as he was concerned about their steadfastness. To Paul, the brotherhood of believers is a unique fraternity that, if honored, can bring spiritual joy. Do you agree? Rich in Christology and personal application, Pastor Ronald H. Gann expounds upon Paul’s famous Prison-Epistle verse-by-verse.

03 - The Joy Of Suffering (Part 1)

Philippians 1:9-18 • June 25, 2017 • Pastor Ronald H. Gann

Paul once wrote that no matter how bad things get in a believer’s life, God can (and will) use the “bad” to produce “good” (cf. Rom. 8:28). Paul experienced this truth firsthand while imprisoned in Rome. In his letter to the Philippians (written under house arrest), the apostle expressed his joy over his difficult circumstances. But why? It’s because he saw God bring about a greater good from it all—namely, the salvation of Roman guards to whom he could preach non-stop. Are you able to see the good in the midst of your pain? Do you believe that, for believers, “all things work together for good” (Rom. 8:28), no matter what? Rich in Christology and personal application, Pastor Ronald H. Gann expounds upon Paul’s famous Prison-Epistle verse-by-verse.

04 - The Joy Of Suffering (Part 2)

Philippians 1:19-26 • July 2, 2017 • Pastor Ronald H. Gann

The epistle to the Philippians is one of the most quoted in the Bible, yet Paul wrote it not for the popular sound bites, but to paint a picture of mature Christian faith. While many give their lives to Jesus, few then go on to live a life of truly vibrant faith. The thesis of Philippians, however, encourages us to live vibrantly. Its reads, “To live is Christ, to die is gain” (Php. 1:21). The point being is that our lives should be lived to Him, through Him, for Him, and with Him, and in such a way that it is about Him—everything should be about Jesus. “To live is Christ” means that Christ is the chief focus, goal, and desire of our life. “To die is gain” means that we will experience the joys of heaven. Rich in Christology and personal application, Pastor Ronald H. Gann expounds upon Paul’s famous Prison-Epistle verse-by-verse.

05 - The Joy Of Christian Unity (Part 1)

Philippians 1:27-30 • July 16, 2017 • Pastor Ronald H. Gann

What does authentic Christian unity look like in action? While the Church today may not manifest perfect oneness for the world to see, there is in fact a mystical oneness among Christians of all stripes that only God can see. Insofar as God is concerned, within the universal (invisible) Church of Jesus Christ there is no schism. There is no racism. There is no division. There are no denominations and there are no classifications. All believers stand shoulder-to-shoulder as one; on equal footing in the mystical body of Christ. But is Christian unity the same as corporate uniformity? Is there room for ecclesiastical diversity? Rich in Christology and personal application, Pastor Ronald H. Gann expounds upon Paul’s famous Prison-Epistle verse-by-verse.

06 - The Joy Of Christian Unity (Part 2)

Philippians 2:1-4 • July 23, 2017 • Pastor Ronald H. Gann

Paul repeatedly emphasized in his writings his desire to see the Body of Christ unified. To the Romans, he emphasized church unity (Rom. 15:5-7). To the Corinthians, he emphasized church oneness (1 Cor. 1:10; 2 Cor. 13:11). To the Ephesians, he emphasized church solidarity (Eph. 4:1-6). To the Colossians, he emphasized church harmony (Col. 3:12-15). To the Philippians, he emphasized church like-mindedness (Php. 1:27-2:4). Moreover, to the churches in Galatia he warned against divisiveness (Gal. 5:26 cf. 6:2-3) and to the Thessalonians he encouraged congregational cohesion (1 Thess. 4:9-10 cf. 2 Thess. 1:3). So why did Paul champion church unity the way that he did and as much as he did? Rich in Christology and personal application, Pastor Ronald H. Gann expounds upon Paul’s famous Prison-Epistle verse-by-verse.

07 - The Joy Of Divine Humiliation

Philippians 2:5-11 • July 30, 2017 • Pastor Ronald H. Gann

If you have ever been to a chiropractor, you know how great it feels to have an adjustment. And we tend to like it because when our spine is aligned, our entire body tends to move and work better. Well, the same is true when it comes to our attitudes. Sometimes it's necessary in God's eyes that we have an attitude adjustment. But how so and in what way exactly? The answer is humility. Christ exemplified humility in all that he said and did and we, as his followers, are to do the same. And his greatest display of humility, of course, was his willingness to leave the glory of heaven and subject himself to an inglorious death on a cross. Do you want to learn more? Rich in Christology and personal application, Pastor Ronald H. Gann expounds upon Paul’s famous Prison-Epistle verse-by-verse.

08 - The Joy Of Sanctification

Philippians 2:12-13 • August 6, 2017 • Pastor Ronald H. Gann

From the earliest days of the church until today, the relationship between the power of God and the responsibility of believers to live a sanctified Christian life has been hotly debated. Some argue that living a life of holiness is simply a matter of passive trust in God. Others argue that one must actively obey God by stringent law-keeping (done in the power of one’s own strength and willpower). And still others suggest that the allusive truth lies somewhere in the middle. So, the question remains: Is the sanctification of a believer entirely the work of God alone, or does the believer play some part in it in some way. Rich in Christology and personal application, Pastor Ronald H. Gann expounds upon Paul’s famous Prison-Epistle verse-by-verse.

09 - The Joy Of A Satisfied Tongue

Philippians 2:14-18 • August 27, 2017 • Pastor Ronald H. Gann

How many good things do we miss out on in life because of our complaining and grumbling against God when His timing doesn't line up with our own? It’s for this very reason, in fact, that Paul told the church in Corinth in 1 Corinthians 10:9-10—just as he tells the Philippians in 2:14-18—that we would do well to refrain from murmuring against God when our prayers go seemingly unanswered, when bad things happen to us, or when we find ourselves on the “short end of the stick” in life. Do you find yourself complaining more about God and His actions than you do praising Him? Rich in Christology and personal application, Pastor Ronald H. Gann expounds upon Paul’s famous Prison-Epistle verse-by-verse.

10 - The Joy Of Godly Nobodies

Philippians 2:19-30 • September 3, 2017 • Pastor Ronald H. Gann

Paul, Timothy, and Epaphroditus were three very different individuals: Paul, the bold, fearless leader. Timothy his quiet, devoted protégé; Epaphroditus a diligent, behind-the-scenes worker willing to sacrifice life and limb for his mentor. Yet all three men, despite their differences and their inadequacies were used by God to accomplish the impossible. And all three men, in their own unique way, manifest the most important characteristic of a godly leader—that is, living a life worth imitating by others. Do you have friends like that? Rich in Christology and personal application, Pastor Ronald H. Gann expounds upon Paul’s famous Prison-Epistle verse-by-verse.

11 - The Joy Of Right Doctrine

Philippians 3:1-3 • September 11, 2017 • Pastor Ronald H. Gann

Proverbs 23:23 reflects the fact that biblical truth is a precious commodity that must be safeguarded at all costs. There comes a time in the life of every church, every ministry, and every Christian when grace and tolerance must give way to truth. We cannot hold hands with everybody. The idea that love covers all and embraces everything and everyone is wrong. Love reaches out to everyone, to be sure, but love does not embrace error or those who pontificate it. Paul knew this firsthand and wanted the Philippians, as well as you and I, to know it as well. Rich in Christology and personal application, Pastor Ronald H. Gann expounds upon Paul’s famous Prison-Epistle verse-by-verse.

12 - The Joy Of God's Grace

Philippians 3:4-11 • September 17, 2017 • Pastor Ronald H. Gann

There once was a time when Paul had been more religious than any of the false teachers of his day. He had been more religious, more “Jewish”, and more zealous for works righteousness (prior to his conversion) than any of the imposters with whom he now contended. He had once believed what they still believed. But then he met Jesus Christ on the road to Damascus (Acts 9). Paul’s ego had been arrested and his legalism, moralism, nationalism, and ritualism (on which he prided himself) was brought to utter ruin. Those things were not only worthless to him but were in fact wicked, because they made him an enemy of Christ. How about you? Rich in Christology and personal application, Pastor Ronald H. Gann expounds upon Paul’s famous Prison-Epistle verse-by-verse.

13 - The Joy Of A Race Run Well

Philippians 3:14-16 • September 24, 2017 • Pastor Ronald H. Gann

An athlete trains around the clock in preparation for the contest that awaits him. A soldier trains year-round in preparation for the battlefield. And to the degree that either trains or slacks off is the difference between winning and losing; between life and death. As believers, we are commanded to train, just as an athlete or solider would, and with a lot of sweat equity. We are to train for, and we are to work at, becoming more and more godly as we pursue the prize of perfection. But since practical perfection is impossible on this side of eternity, why should Christians even bother? Rich in Christology and personal application, Pastor Ronald H. Gann expounds upon Paul’s famous Prison-Epistle verse-by-verse.

14 - The Joy Of Godly Examples

Philippians 3:17-21 • October 9, 2017 • Pastor Ronald H. Gann

Jesus Christ set the perfect standard for which we, as Christians, are to strive, the perfect model which we are to emulate, and the perfect pattern which we are to follow. But Jesus never had to perfect godliness or pursue perfection in his life. He was born with both. But that was not the case with the apostle Paul. He was a fellow sinner, like us, who travelled the same path toward spiritual perfection, and therefore a proper example for believers to imitate. But shouldn't all Christians be able to say the same thing and serve as examples to others on how to live, especially unbelievers? Rich in Christology and personal application, Pastor Ronald H. Gann expounds upon Paul’s famous Prison-Epistle verse-by-verse.

15 - The Joy Of Reconciliation

Philippians 4:1-5 • October 15, 2017 • Pastor Ronald H. Gann

Human nature being what it is, we’re not always going to get along with all people all of the time. But if the fallout between Paul and Barnabas in Acts 16, and the acrimony between Euodia and Synchete in Philippians 4, tells us anything, it tells us that Christians must agree to disagree agreeably. We can have a separation that is healthy rather than contemptible, and we can have a parting of the ways that honors God rather than drags His name through the mud. But no matter the circumstances, all Christians should be willing to reconcile with one another. Rich in Christology and personal application, Pastor Ronald H. Gann expounds upon Paul’s famous Prison-Epistle verse-by-verse.

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